Bob Raissman: Fox Sports making huge bet that Tom Brady will shine in the booth

There are great unknowns accompanying Tom Brady’s 10-year, $375 million bombshell deal with Fox Sports making the (as of today) Bucs quarterback, and cinch Hall of Famer, its No. 1 NFL analyst.

Like when will Brady ultimately exit the playing field and enter the booth?

Or are Fox Sports suits finished wheeling and dealing?

Much of the reaction to the Foxies bold move is about whether Brady, who mostly showed his stoic side, while using an economy of words during his 22 years’ worth of meetings with the media, has the every-man personality, the likeability factor and verbal skills to handle such a high-wire (sans net) act?

Brady likely will be working with play-by-play man Kevin Burkhardt, a steady voice. Yet considering the unorthodox history of Fox Sports, what’s to stop the Foxies from going to a three-person booth? Brady would be placed in a more conversational setting. Partners? For added buzz, Fox could call on one of Brady’s security blankets in New England: Rob Gronkowski, who has already worked for Fox. Or Julian Edelman, who has already made some noise on Paramount+ “Inside the NFL.”

Although it was under its original executive team, Fox Sports once assembled one of the most talented 3-man NFL broadcast teams to ever grace the small screen when it debuted the trio of Joe Buck, Troy Aikman and Cris Collinsworth, to replace John Madden and Pat Summerall, in 2002. Aikman, Buck and Collinsworth lasted three entertaining years. If the Foxies think a 3-man would increase Brady’s chance to succeed, they shouldn’t hesitate to use it.

While much of the fallout over the mega contract has centered on whether Brady has the ability to thrive, will the gig even be what he expects? This is a full-time job. This is not about fooling around. To succeed at such a lofty level, there must be a strong desire to put in intense game preparation. To know two teams inside-out every week. It’s a seven-month grind; not seven months of taking breaks for a round of golf. Brady will be hard-pressed to Tony Romo his way through the gig. Expectations will be much higher for Brady.

The easy answer to any motivational concerns is M-O-N-E-Y. The reported $37.5 million per year should be enough to keep Brady’s nose to the grindstone. Then again, Brady already has the big money and a lifestyle that goes with it. More millions can’t change it much. What made Brady tick, the love of competing and the competition itself, will disappear the minute he stops playing football and starts making his living talking about it. Making a good point, that is recognized by his Fox crew or some Gasbag in Boston, won’t compare, or produce the same level of excitement, or adrenalin rush, as driving his team down the field for a game-winning score.

In the broadcast booth, there are no winners or losers. No thrilling wins or heartbreaking losses. No victory celebrations. No jumping into the arms of your producer. It’s a totally subjective business, influenced more and more …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – Sports


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